Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times / 12724 by Jason

Posted by C G Rishikesh on March 25th, 2008

C G Rishikesh.

I took longer to solve this puzzle than the others that I have done here before. To tell the truth, I have all except 18dn (where, of course, I can guess the second word of the phrase); 29ac: I can guess the word from the crossings and also from “Destroy” part of the clue, but the full annotation/explanation eludes me at the moment of writing. While in the earlier FT crosswords I found full justification for every clue, here I am floundering. 


5 FOLD-UP – DD – ‘fold-up stocking’ (“Sort of  stocking”) I can understand; I am unable to justify the clue as a whole. Help!  HOLD-UP – DD – sort of stocking/bank ‘job’ (robbery)

  11 MONT BLANC – CD? Not exactly! – ‘high point’ in the literal sense and not in the figurative sense of, say, ‘the most memorable moment of an event’. “With its 4,808 m summit, Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the Alps and Western Europe…” (Wikipedia)

12 SAG – rev. of ‘gas’ (loosely, ‘talk'; actually ‘gas’ is empty or boastful or even garrulous talk)

13 ON ONE’S GUARD – CD – I got the third word of this phrase at later stages from crossings and the entire solution from the definition, which I think is ‘carefully'; the full justification is lost on me. Help!

15 STENCH – DD? – ‘smell’ – I need explanation for ‘fish’ part of the clue.

19 AIRLIFT – anag. of ‘if trial’, ‘fails’ being the anag. signal. In a straightforward clue the definition. “An emergency procedure” may not be sufficient to lead to the answer. 

21 RESIDE – Re (‘again’), side (‘ledge’) Here the def. part of the clue (‘assign’) is not readily discernible. The nearest that I can think of is, say, “The power to cancel the meeting resides in the convenor”, where it would mean that the power is assigned to the chairman.

23 MATHEMATICS – CD (Really!) – Here ‘summer’ is ‘one who does the sums’. Crossword veterans know what ‘a summer danger’ is.

25 LAG – rev. of ‘gal’

26 HANSOM CAB – hom. of ‘handsome cab’. I am afraid this is not a very satisfying clue.

28 ORATE – o (old), rate (charge)

30 TWIN BEDS – I considered ‘love nest’ before I abandoned it. Nothing in the clue to suggest that the required word is a plural form; or is there?


1 HUGEST – hug (cuddle), est, Fr.’is’ 2 ALLIGATOR – anag. of a, t(from ‘tense’, n.), gorilla

3 LEGIONNAIRE – solved in later stages from the crossings; ref. needs lookup.

4 MAMMOTH – mam (mum), moth (insect). ‘squashed’ seems to play a passive role in surface reading; at any rate it is not an anag. ind.

7 DRAMA – &Lit – m (male) in draa, anag. of RADA (for Royal Academy of Dramatic Art). For def, reread the whole clue. Is ‘performing’ to be taken as an anag. signal? That’s your choice!  

9 ENTERS – deletion – solved from crossings and def. (records). I am yet to figure out what is deleted from what. Put me out of misery!

14 GREASY SPOON – Greasy (buttery) spoon (court, v.).  I would like to ask my readers if they have ever told their sweethearts “I am hungry… I am thirsting… Come on, off to a greasy spoon!”

17 MIDDLE AGE – CD – Supposed period in one’s life when one is supposed to put on weight around the waist. I am well past middle age and I don’t have it!

20 THATCH – that, ch – “That ch” (“church over there”)

21 RAINBOW – I in ‘ranbow’ (anag. of ‘a brown’).  ‘Rainbow trout’ is a sort of trout.

22 PROGRESS – deletion of pr (prince) from progress (to carry on)

24 TENOR – ‘Top scoring man’ in the musical sense. Ten (X), or (gold) terms which a scorer, whether top or otherwise, might probably use. X, I think, is entered in the cricket scoring sheet when the batsman does not score anything. In any case, not a really satisfying clue.

One Response to “Financial Times / 12724 by Jason”

  1. a man eating chocolate says:

    Hi CG. Nice blog, once again.

    First, Smell is fish = STENCH: here, Jason uses the apostrophised form (‘s = is), plus TENCH, a fish.

    Second, RESIDE is re/ side, with the def being ‘to lodge’.

    9dn (carp) ENTERS: bit surprised to see this Britishism in what is pretty much an international puzz! Greasy spoon too seems somewhat parochial.

    Some nice clues in this one, but you sense Jason has yet to grasp fully the golden thingy.

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